Indiana College Student Shot, Killed by Stray Bullet on NYC ‘Dream' Visit

NYPD investigators don't believe Ethan Williams was the intended target

Ethan Williams, 20, of Indiana
Williams Family

A college student visiting New York City was the unintended target of deadly gunfire Saturday morning in Brooklyn, police said.

Police officials say 20-year-old Ethan Williams of Indiana was found around 2:30 a.m. on Eldert Street with a gunshot wound to his chest. He later died at Wyckoff Medical Center.

The victim's family says the Indiana University student was visiting the city to fulfill a lifelong dream.

"He dreamed of visiting New York since he was a boy and saw the movie 'Spiderman.' Ethan was living that dream on a trip to New York when he was struck by a stray bullet and killed," the family said in a statement to WTHR.

NYPD investigators don't believe Williams was the intended target. No arrests have been made and the investigation is ongoing, police say.

The family's statement continued: "Ethan, a sophomore film student at Indiana University, loved people, particularly those who were marginalized or hurting. If he had the opportunity to say something to the shooter, we know that he would invite him for a cup of coffee and ask to hear their story. He would forgive without delay. Ethan always saw beyond the surface and took the time to help others feel seen, important and loved."

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